That's right... it's time for the annual Middle School Winter Concert. I had to wear a knit hat today because my ears are trying to run away from home.
The thing is... not even the most diehard, ultra-supportive, super-invested parents can actually LIKE these things. I know, I know...we all put on a brave face, and smile and clap...but we're all thinking the same thing. "Dear Jesus, if this is how we are celebrating the birth of God's child... with stunted, lurching and off-key Romanian Yule carols, then fire will surely rain from the heavens before a fortnight hath passed." This is like walking all the way to Bethlehem for weeks on end, to seek the presence of your newfound king, and the only son of the Almighty, only to give the little baby Jesus a bowling ball with your name etched into it.
Okay, that's probably just me. But there is no logical way an intelligent person can still derive pleasure from this overt act of cacophonous treason. Early on, they had the "cute factor" working. The "Aww-Aren't-They-Precious" thing. That ship has sailed my friends. These kids are too old to be cute. That line was crossed when I had to discuss oral sex with my daughter in the backyard at my parent's house on Fourth of July. Once you've heard your daughter say the word "blowjob", "Cute" is a thing of the past.
But we'll clap and smile. The ultra-sarcastic will bring video recorders so they can exact swift and cruel vengeance upon the family members who didn't make it to the show. Once they even tried to have a standing ovation. I looked around in terror, afraid that a fire had broken out or something. "Why is everyone standing?" I thought. "Are they being ironic?"
And then there was last year... the Honors Choir that The Girl is in, did this haunting, beautiful rendition of "Silent Night". The air was dead still inside the theater as their thin, angelic voices grew to become mighty. You could sense that the audience was holding its breath as those delicate, warm words of comfort floated over the throng.I felt the goosebumps gallop down my arm and the heat in the corner of my eyes building to a watery tumble. My heart beat a little faster and I thought "Wow. They've finally gotten good." This thought alone was enough to justify the tears. It was like getting a call from the Governor at 11:55pm.
Immediately after that came an especially kazoo-focused version of Jingle Bells. With half of the lyrics in French.
That got a standing ovation. Sarcastic bastards.